David Di Franco


5 Mistakes to Avoid When Making YouTube Videos

When creating any kind of content, there are always going to be numerous mistakes that you'll want to avoid making — some more obvious than others. This is especially apparent when creating videos and putting them out into the world for all to enjoy, and sometimes even criticize.

Following my pointers below, you can quickly learn how to not only present yourself more professionally, but also be one step ahead of newer video creators. And speaking from personal experience, I can guarantee that you will notice positive results almost instantly.

Uploading videos in portrait (vertical) orientation

Often referred to as vertical video, this is the easiest mistake that you can avoid when getting started on YouTube. Because most users nowadays enjoy watching videos on devices with widescreen displays, you will want to record your content in landscape orientation — otherwise known as 16:9 video.

This can be achieved by simply remembering to rotate your phone or tablet before recording a video. If the screen you are looking at has more horizontal space than vertical, then you're doing it right. Congratulations on conquering one of my biggest pet peeves as a content creator.

Limiting yourself on video ideas

If you are just getting started in creating video content, then consider your YouTube channel a digital playground. You have complete creative freedom to try whatever ideas come to mind, without the risk of losing any kind of viewership.

Ask yourself, why did you make a channel to begin with? Perhaps you're like me and you enjoy talking about technology. If that's the case, then you might want to consider making a handful of unboxing videos — and perhaps a review or two. And if that's not enough, make a video about your favorite apps.

Once your content has been live for a few weeks, go into your Video Manager view and take a look at which videos are performing the best. Use that data to determine the kind of content that your audience prefers to see. But of course, don't limit yourself on just that. Be sure to create content for your own enjoyment, too.

Giving into the haters

Believe it or not, this is still something I struggle with on a regular basis. Sure,  I've gotten better over the years, but sometimes it can be difficult to look past the hate that is generated on YouTube. And believe me, there is enough to go around.

YouTube can be a very dark and discouraging place, but it can also promote  a ton of positivity — which is why it's important to only focus on the individuals who matter. You are always going to have someone in this world who disagrees with your decisions in life, so why waste time trying to justify their actions?

As hard as it may seem, it's best to concentrate your positive energy on your true supporters. Those are the people who will take you far. After all, if someone is willing to personally attack you, do you even want them around? Probably not

Thinking money is everything

Let's make something clear... YouTube is not about making a ton of money. Sure, it's certainly possible, but you do not want to enter the world of video content thinking about generating revenue. You will likely begin making a bit of money at some point, but that should be the least of your concerns when just getting started.

But instead of making money, what about spending it? While I do encourage you to invest in some decent equipment, there is no reason to put yourself in debt. Don't be fooled into thinking you need an expensive camera just to create quality content. Check out my "Starting a YouTube Channel on a Budget" post and you'll see exactly what I mean.

Whether you are looking to spend it or make it, money should not be a concern of yours in the early stages of making videos. Just have fun, as opportunities will present themselves naturally over time.

Taking yourself too seriously

While YouTube has undoubtedly gained recognition over the years as a serious platform for creators, that doesn't mean you suddenly need to be stressed into presenting yourself as a professional. And actually, I've been on YouTube for nearly 10 years now and I have yet to call myself a pro — and I likely never will.

The great thing about YouTube is the ability to be yourself, especially if you are a vlogger. Nothing is more personal than documenting your personal life through video. It's the perfect opportunity to show the world the real you. Do you have a whacky personality and want to share it with others? Knock yourself out!